Hey everyone, Ellexa here! I am back and thrilled to talk today about something that really has me excited lately.
For the last year, I have been learning more about the effects of reducing my waste, and making small changes in my lifestyle to keep the oceans blue and the landfills minimal. If you’re living a killer low-waste life style or just hearing about it for the first time, welcome. I am glad you’re here. I wanted to offer 5 easy swaps that I have made as a busy, on-the-go, and budget conscious college student. They are practical for people of all ages and lifestyles looking to cut down on waste and do some good for their planet.
- Ditch the plastic water bottle.
Find a water bottle that you love and take it everywhere with you. I would argue that this is the easiest swap. Water is water, and having a water bottle that keeps your water cool for hours is a nice perk too. I have a 32oz Hydro Flask that I never leave the house without it, and because it’s stainless steel it will last forever!
- Bring your own grocery bags!
This one may seem like an extra step, but once you get in a rhythm, it becomes second nature. I have about 5 reusable bags that stay in my car so I’ll always have one whenever I am grocery shopping. If I go grocery shopping, after I unload everything inside I immediately bring the bags back to my car so I don’t have to worry about forgetting them the next time I go out.
- Keep a reusable travel cup in your car.
Again, find a reusable cup you love and are excited to use. Then put it with your reusable grocery bags in your car. By bringing your own cup when you grab your morning coffee you keep a cup, sleeve, and lid out of the waste bin AND you usually get a discount. I mean come on… why wouldn’t you bring your own cup? (To go the extra mile: if you have leftovers from a night out, you can skip the to-go containers and put the food in your reusable mug to transfer into Tupperware when you get home) Rock ‘n’ roll baby.
- Trade baggies for Tupperware.
I looooveeee me some Tupperware, especially the ones with little designated cubbies for all my snacks. I’m a college kid on the go, so I have a collapsible container that I use for lunches (mommas, this is perfect for the kiddies too) and then use various glass containers, mason jars, and cotton pouches for leftovers, nuts, fruits, and veggies. Pro tip: I often use linen or cloth napkins to tie up my Tupperware lunch and snacks for the day (as pictured). It keeps everything together and provides a quick reusable napkin for meal time.
- Use a safety razor.
I debated adding this one to the list for quite some time. Mostly because the safety razor took me a long time to get used to, and I wanted to be honest in suggesting swaps that I have faithfully adopted. I was on board with the price right away. I paid $13 on Amazon for a stainless-steel razor that came with 20 blades that I switch out about once a month (you can buy 100 blades by themselves for about $7). I’ve heard from people going on year 4 with their razor and still loving it, so I didn’t want to give up. I watched a lot of YouTube videos, am finally getting the hang of it, and starting to love the price and the product. Typically, people recycle the little blades as scrap metal and therefore keep dozens of plastic razors… again, out of the landfill.
Some of these swaps you might end up implementing and loving, others might not work for you and that’s okay too. If you’re on the hunt for ways to reduce your waste you’ll likely find other swaps that you enjoy and that’s great too! I recommend getting inspired by various accounts on social media (I love mamaeatsplants and bezerowastegirl) or doing research on your own regarding the effects of trash and the effects of you reducing trash (this part can be super fun). Then, be an example. If someone asks why you’re skipping the plastic produce bag or bringing your own coffee cup kindly tell them why.
It’s always a pleasure.